Tag Archives: Jess Williamson

New Jess Williamson: Topanga Two Step

Video: Jess Williamson – “Topanga Two Step”

Directed by Samuel Walker. From Time Ain’t Accidental, out now on Mexican Summer.

I can never remember the difference between Topanga Canyon and Laurel Canyon. I know one is more rural and one is basically in the middle of Hollywood, but I can never remember which is which. I think Neil Young lived in both.

I’m with some friends you don’t know in the studio
And you’re on the beach.

Is that a Neil Young reference? Probably not but maybe.

Williams says, “Lyrically, the song comes from a moment in my life when I was trying too hard to impress someone who was really different from me, but the rejection and weirdness I felt ended up guiding me into a deeper understanding of myself.”

Got my best boots on for ya babe
And I’m falling cross your dance floor
I’m a sparkling thing you ain’t never seen before.

She told Stereogum, “But let’s just say there’s a certain type of man that is dating in LA, that has money. I just realized like, ‘What do you think of me?’ I don’t come from where you come from. I’m not familiar with some of these things that are normal to you. That’s where ‘Topanga Two Step’ really came from. Noticing my own otherness, my own Texan-ness, in contrast to some of these other people that I was running around with for a second. I was so different in a way I had never thought about before. I was feeling a little judged but also having fun with it too and not taking it too seriously.”

Good for her for having fun with it–and getting a good song out of it–but to hell with all those assholes in Los Angeles. They have no idea what’s actually cool.

Jess Williamson: web, bandcamp, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Jess Williamson: Chasing Spirits

Video: Jess Williamson – “Chasing Spirits”

Directed by Rocco Rivetti. From Time Ain’t Accidental, out June 9 on Mexican Summer.

Such a cool, laid back vibe.

Are my love songs lies now that the love is gone?
There’s the one about forever and
Loving you in a past life
Or whatever.

Williamson says, “You can write a deeply devotional love song about a partner and then one day break up. In that same vein, the title of this song has multiple interpretations. Chasing spirits can be a way of trying to connect with supernatural entities or one’s own higher self, and also, you order spirits at the bar or pick them up at the liquor store, maybe with a chaser.”

There was a liquor store by my El stop in Chicago with a sign that advertised “For all your spiritual needs.” I love the sacrilegious amalgamation of the divine and the alcoholic. Chasing spirits is right up the same alley.

Jess Williamson: web, bandcamp, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Jess Williamson: Hunter

Video: Jess Williamson – “Hunter”

Directed by Rocco Rivetti. From Time Ain’t Accidental out June 9 on Mexican Summer.

This is a good song. And “My love is pure as the universe / Honest as an ashtray” is a great line, immediately removing any corny sentimentality and butting it out. Ashtrays don’t lie.

Williamson says, “If you’ve been ghosted, if you’ve chased after an unavailable person, if you’ve been given crumbs when you need a full meal, ‘Hunter’ is a song for you. I wrote it during a time when I was heartbroken over a breakup and experimenting with dating in Los Angeles. That era felt like being thrown to the wolves, but it helped me to see myself and what I really wanted more clearly. This song is an anthem for the true lovers out there, anyone who is hunting for the real thing.”

Why anybody would choose to live in Los Angeles is beyond me. Other than the weather, I guess. But ugh. I’m sure there’s still a cool dirtbag underground but no thanks. It’s gross and it always has been. Read The Day of the Locust.

Jess Williamson: web, bandcamp, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Jess Williamson video: Wild Rain

Video: Jess Williamson – “Wild Rain”

Directed by Eli Welbourne. From Cosmic Wink, out now on Mexican Summer.

This is a dreamy slow burner from Jess Williamson whose previous video “I See The White” was moody and impressive. “Wild Rain” is driven by a tremoloed electric piano and Williamson’s sleepy vocals.

You say there’s two women
Living inside of me
And one’s doubt and desire
And she’s our enemy

Williamson says, “I recorded this song at first with just me singing and playing it on an acoustic guitar. We thought it was going to be a scratch vocal so we didn’t mic everything the ‘correct’ way…I like the way it sounds. It’s a little bit lazy. There is this remnant of my acoustic guitar bleeding from my headphones into the vocal track, you can hear it the most at the beginning of the song. But we liked that too! A happy accident. It became the perfect rhythmic element to anchor the beginning of the song. It reminds me of rain. We wanted to have a moment of the heavens breaking open midway through and ushering us into another realm. So we started building off just my voice and the memory of an acoustic guitar, layering synths and more vocals. This is probably my favorite song on the album and it’s the first song I wrote for Cosmic Wink.”

Director Eli Welbourne says, “The video in essence is supposed to be a living interpretive scrapbook that catalogs Jess’ train of thought visually in tandem with the song as she questions herself and previous relations she had. The song discusses a duality within her and I wanted to represent that in a collage where she is visually split in two, undergoes psychedelic transformations, and the center of the screen becomes a stage for other visual elements to dance.”

Jess Williamson: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Jess Williamson video: Wild Rain

New Jess Williamson video: I See The White

Video: Jess Williamson – “I See The White”

Directed by Eli Welbourne. From Cosmic Wink, due May 11 on Mexican Summer.

A cool, moody song about the brevity of existence. Williamson was inspired by the aging of her dog, Frankie. “I noticed the graying of the fur around her eyes, and I realized that she was a physical manifestation of the passing of time, and it was heartbreaking. It’s so easy to act like we have all the time in the world, to feel immortal or invincible.”

She explained to Stereogum:

This song is a love song and it’s also kind of me throwing a tantrum. It’s begging for answers and making a few demands too. I get it, life is short but our souls live on, right? So, I’m gonna need my sweetheart to come too, okay? And maybe my dog. Is that so much to ask? Musically, I wanted this song to feel joyful and pretty, because why shouldn’t we celebrate love alongside the tough questions? Life is wild and beautiful and sad and ecstatic all at once, and I wanted this song to be the same way. We might as well dance and sing and have fun with the time we have because we’re here and then we’re gone, and nothing lasts forever…or does it?

We shall see…

Jess Williamson: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.